Saturday 14 March 2020

Let's Brew Wednesday - 1945 Tetley Bitter

Back to one of my old favourites: Tetley's. A brewery for which I had an amazing regard and affection. At least their recipes live on.

The strength of Tetley Bitter, even in the final year of the war, surprises me. I remember it from the 1970s, when it was only about 3.5% ABV. Not much stronger than their Mild.

At almost 5% ABV, it was way stronger than most of the draught beers available in 1945. You were lucky to find anything over 3.5% ABV. Though it remained quite strong, the percentage fall in OG between K in 1939 and Bitter in 1945, at about 15%, is pretty much spot on the average.

There recipe has only a few elements: base pale malt, flaked barley, sugar and caramel. The sugar is something called ERC. Having no idea what that might have been, I’ve guessed No. 1 invert sugar. Hopefully it’s somewhere close.

The level of hopping – and the calculated IBUs – are incredibly low for a fairly strong Bitter. But even before the war Tetley’s hopping rates were very low, especially for their Bitter. The hops themselves were all from Kent, from the 1943 and 1944 crops.

1945 Tetley Bitter
pale malt 5.75 lb 65.64%
flaked barley 1.25 lb 14.27%
No. 1 invert sugar 1.75 lb 19.98%
caramel 2000 SRM 0.01 lb 0.11%
Fuggles 120 mins 0.33 oz
Fuggles 90 mins 0.33 oz
Fuggles 30 mins 0.33 oz
Goldings dry hops 0.25 oz
OG 1040
FG 1002.5
ABV 4.96
Apparent attenuation 93.75%
IBU 13
Mash at 147º F
Sparge at 165º F
Boil time 120 minutes
pitching temp 64º F
Yeast Wyeast 1469 West Yorkshire Ale

1 comment:

Ian said...

I assume the hopping rate is lpwer because of how dry the resulting beer is.